Internet dating sites are increasingly popular as a way of finding that elusive 'someone'. You may be looking for a lifelong partner or you may not feel ready to settle down and be looking for a companion. Perhaps you have hobbies or play a sport and would like to find someone who shares your interest. There are specific sites for these things or you can make use of a generalist dating site and state what sort of relationship you are looking for.
When you sign up you will have to compose a profile. This can seem a bit like applying for a job except you don't need to include photos of yourself in a job application.
There are different ideas about how to do your profile. There are articles in magazines and on the internet about the whole online dating process. Love at First Click. The Ultimate Guide to Online Dating by Laurie Davis is an interesting book about outline dating with lots of information. read more
Perhaps you don't want to read a book before composing your profile but would rather a few tips so you can get on with it. Five tips for setting up your profile are:
Remember your goal is to get to meet someone in the real world
Portray yourself in a positive manner
Choose photos with care
Say what you are looking for
Be honest, but careful
Your goal is to meet someone in the real world When setting up your profile concentrate on communicating what sort of person you want to meet. Give enough information about yourself to make suitable people want to meet you face to face.
Portray yourself in a positive manner It is a good idea to set up your profile when you are happy and in a good frame of mind. You don't want to come across as someone who is lonely and desperate to meet just anyone rather than spend time alone. If you portray yourself as desperate you won't attract interesting positive people. You may also be seen as an easy target for an online scam.
Avoid listing your pet hates and what you don't want. Instead include what makes you an individual and what you do like.
Choose photos with care Some people are hesitant to put a photo on their profile. However, research shows profiles with photos attract more interest. Anyway, you want to know what the person you are planning to meet with looks like, don't you. Well, they want to know what you look like.
It is suggested you post several photos including some informal shots showing you enjoying yourself. Crop out other people so you are the focus of the photo.
Make sure photos are recent. Avoid photos that reveal too much skin as they may attract the wrong sort of attention. Choose photos that are flattering and if you don't have any, ask a friend to take some photos of you wearing clothes that show you looking your best.
Some experts recommend the use of professional photos for your profile. I guess it's a matter of personal preference but I wouldn't use these because in everyday life I haven't had my makeup professionally done.
Image by Marie Vonow
Say what you are looking for Perhaps you have just moved to a new city and just want to meet someone for dinner and movie dates. State this. If on the other hand you are looking for a long term relationship put this in writing. Don't expect people to read between the lines to work out what kind of relationship you are looking for.
Dating sites recommend not saying what you are looking for in terms of income and financial status or baby wise.
Be honest, but careful You don't have to mention everything about yourself in your profile. If you don't want to give details, leave it out rather than lying about it. At some stage the truth will probably come out and explaining why you told a lie can be awkward.
Don't give too much information about yourself in your profile. Be careful about the information you give away so you aren't setting yourself up to be scammed or taken advantage of. It's not a good idea to mention you have lots of money, don't give detailed information on where you live and never include your phone number or address.
Dating sites often provide information to guide you in setting up a profile and may have advice about avoiding cliques which do nothing to set your profile apart from the others. Remember to use your profile as a tool to show who you are and what you are looking for. Enjoy meeting some new people.